Making Knowledge

  • Ane Ohrvik
Chapter
Part of the Palgrave Historical Studies in Witchcraft and Magic book series (PHSWM)

Abstract

That the material form of the Black Books is inextricably tied to their application and meaning is a foundational premise of the study. Chapter 3 examines the production technologies of format, binding and textual style as an exterior ‘reading’. While the descriptive enquiry answers the simple question of what characterises the Black Books, the analysis sheds light on why these material features appear as they do and what caused their application. The close focus on material features shows that format, binding and textual style not only make the Black Books books in their own right but also that they contribute to the presentation of the knowledge contained as authorisation strategies to secure its reception.

On 15 September 1816 a twenty-three-year-old man named Arne Larsen from Holt in southern Norway visited the city of Amsterdam. Before his visit, he had received his certificate as a naval third mate. Being skilled in reading and writing, which later earned him a position as a schoolteacher, it comes as no surprise that during his stay in Amsterdam he purchased a book. The book measured 17.3 by 10.8 centimetres and was equipped with stiff cloth covers and strings on the side which served to protect the pages inside the book. Bought as a book intended for his own writings, it probably did not take long before Arne Larsen engaged in the task. At a later point he added a small, yet interesting biography of the book on the inner cover: ‘This book belongs to me school teacher Arne Larsen bought in Amsterdam in Holland on the 15th of September 1816 paying 3 Stÿver for it’.1 Over the next few decades he added knowledge on a variety of subjects to the book, knowledge which suited his interests and was considered useful to him and the people around him. As time went by, he would test its usefulness and verify or dismiss it accordingly in an effort to ensure the value of the knowledge in the book.2 What he wrote was a Black Book.

This account is exceptional in many ways. It gives us a rare glimpse into the social circumstances under which a material book was obtained and transformed into a Black Book. Generally, neither the provenance records for the manuscripts nor the manuscripts themselves provide such information, which makes it necessary to investigate the material features to see what they can tell us of the manufacturing processes and the reasons for their form.

Material features reveal in their own way when, how and why they were materialised and for what purpose. That the material forms of the Black Books are inextricably tied to their application and meaning is a foundational premise in this study.3 Understanding the inseparable tie between form, application and meaning involves accepting not only that size and format—along with other features such as binding, paper quality, textual features and visible traces of use—create meaning because they elucidate the production process, but also that they are linked to the manufacturing process and to the intended use and mode of reception of the knowledge in the book.

While the following investigation of the production technologies of format, binding and textual style is a first step towards a mainly exterior ‘reading’, Chap.  8 will continue this particular reading with an interior ‘reading’ of the book’s organisational apparatus. The descriptive enquiry here answers the simple question of what characterises these books, while the analysis sheds light on why these material features appear as they do and what could have caused their application. By focussing closely on the material features I intend to show that format, binding and textual style not only make the Black Book a book in its own right, but also that they contribute to the presentation of the knowledge contained as applied authorisation strategies to secure its reception.4

Format

The format of historical manuscripts is measured as the size of the leaves. Hence, the most common labels for manuscripts, namely folio, quarto, octavo, duodecimo and sextodecimo, are generally determined by how many times the leaves are folded. Whereas the largest format, folio, is folded only once, which gives us two leaves and four pages, quarto is folded twice giving us four leaves and eight pages. The smaller formats, octavo and duodecimo, are folded three and four times, respectively, producing small leaflets of eight and sixteen leaves with sixteen and thirty-two pages. The actual size of the formats depends, however, on the size of the leaves produced. Henrik Horstbøll points out that from the fifteenth century to the eighteenth century mostly four sizes of leaves were produced in Europe, which gives us a relatively standardised picture of the height of the pages. Generally, the leaves varied from roughly 70 by 50 centimetres to 45 by 35 centimetres. The uncut page height of a folio was approximately 30 centimetres, the quarto a minimum of 19 centimetres, the octavo a minimum of 15 centimetres, the duodecimo about 12.5 centimetres and the sextodecimo a minimum of 9.5 centimetres.5

The simple and obvious fact that formats are determined by the size of the leaves is a crucial point, though. It involves the physical action performed by the maker of the book and the deliberate choices made in the production process; deciding on the number of folds and, in turn, the format. What determined the specific formats of the Black Books is explored from two perspectives: how format is connected with the use of the books; and how literary conventions may have affected the choice.6

The Black Books are first and foremost centred on the two formats of quarto and octavo, with fourteen and twenty-eight books, respectively (see Table 3.1). Judging from the measurements of each book, the majority of smaller format versions appear as octavos. Taking into account the number of books dated to the different periods, the use of these formats also appears constant across the centuries, except for the use of quarto in the first half of the nineteenth century, which is represented by only one book. There are no books in folio, only two books in duodecimo and only one in sextodecimo
Table 3.1

Format

Period

Total

Qua rto

Octa vo

Duodecimo

Sexto decimo

Unknown

1601–1650

1

 

1

   

1651–1700

      

1701–1750

8

5

3

   

1751–1800

32

8

17

2

1

4

1801–1850

10

1

7

  

2

Total

51

14

28

2

1

6

formats.

The fact that use and target audience were decisive factors in determining the formats of printed books in Denmark during the seventeenth century has been thoroughly documented by Charlotte Appel.7 In this period concerns about the increasingly differentiated European book market affected format choices based on gender, social background and profession. Practical factors—such as the need to transport books connected with professions such as travellers and seamen—meant that books intended for these groups were produced in small formats. Books intended as handbooks—such as psalm books, prayer books and catechisms, which were often produced for women and printed on a large scale during this century—were all printed in small formats in accordance with the needs defined by the reading situations, in this case as ‘books at hand’ intended for repeated consultation.8

Contrary to the small and ‘handy’ formats, which were easy to consult and carry around, larger books signalled more stationary use and were often found in institutional contexts and meant for instructional collective use, for example prayer books in churches and medicinal illustrative works at universities. The size of a printed book tells us clearly about people’s interaction with the book, and there is no reason to suggest that the choice of manuscript formats was any different. As Margaret Ezell points out with regard to European medieval manuscripts, their physical design signalled both their possible audience and their use. Devotional books for women in the home or for missionary purposes would be smaller, practical, mobile objects, while larger and heavier manuscripts were produced for stationary use by the clergy in churches or monasteries.9 Thus, in order to identify what motivated the utilisation of different technologies in the manufacturing of the Black Books, a parallel comparison to both print and scripts must be made, as these forms informed and inspired each other.

Only three Black Books point explicitly to the relationship between format and the book’s intended use. In a book from Kvam in Oppland County from around 1800 the main title on the cover states that it is A small hand book correct after the original found and compiled on parchment Anno 1516 on the 16th of September.10 On the second leaf a second abbreviated title confirms that the book is A small art book. Similarly, the title page of a late eighteenth-century Black Book from Elverum informs us that the book is A small art book or a summary of the real Sybrianus which was written by a bishop Johanes Sell of Oxford in England .11 Finally, a book from Ringerike produced around 1830 explains in a short foreword that ‘this little book contains much useful advice for those who will use it carefully on both people and livestock’.12 Descriptions such as ‘handbook’, ‘small art book’ and ‘little book’ point both to the books’ smaller format and to their intended use as being small enough to carry around by hand.

Judging by the measurements of these books, in these cases 17 by 10 or 11 centimetres, which is the format of several octavo books in the corpus, these books may very well have served as handbooks, even though the material evidence of such use is inconclusive. Wear patterns on the cover of a couple of the books indicate that they may have been kept in a pocket or similar storage for quite some time, and several books indicate frequent use: text has faded or been worn off; occasional leaves are torn; and the pages have suffered water damage or are stained by spills and dirt. Most books also show wear and tear along the page edges, which proves that all the Black Books have been used, some intensively. Still, the relatively good condition of the majority of the manuscripts reveals that their owners cared for them. Considering that many books changed ownership multiple times and were frequently consulted, it is actually surprising that their general condition is as good as it is.

As books filled with various kinds of knowledge offering solutions to everyday challenges, it is surprising that the Black Books do not appear in even smaller, more practical and accessible formats. A Black Book in sextodecimo format could easily have been transported and kept in a jacket pocket and thus immediately been consulted and used when circumstances called for it—regardless of place. Still, the actual formats and the wear of the books are in conflict with this notion and point towards a more stationary utilisation, of being stored on a shelf, in a chest or a cabinet in the owner’s home and only consulted when relevant.13 Even though one would have expected a form of use that implied smaller formats, the material condition of the corpus indicates, to the contrary, that they did not serve mainly as handbooks, but were probably kept close to home and ‘safe’ from unwanted attention. This realisation is probably part of the reason why the Black Book writers chose the larger formats.

While Chap.  6 explores narratives of healing and magic that account for the application of the knowledge kept in Black Books, it is worth noting here how these legends about the Black Books fail to describe the actual use of the books. While the legends may reveal who owned a Black Book and how they would, for example, summon , conjure or combat the Devil, locate the origin of the knowledge obtained in Black Books, warn against the potent power contained in a book and describe incidents where someone came across and saw a Black Book by accident, the legends never portray their actual use. Far from narrating a sorcerer with his powerful magic book in hand mumbling incantations over the sick, the books are never present or—at least—visible. It is a somewhat intriguing thought that their possible stationary use served as an underlying motive in these narratives.14

Another factor that could have influenced the choice of format is the literary conventions of the period. Cultural or social factors or ideals concerning this type of manufacturing may have influenced the production. Specific literary works or subject fields to which the makers wanted to relate may also have influenced format choices. A large-scale investigation touching upon this subject has been conducted by Henrik Horstbøll in connection with his study of the development of popular printing in Denmark in 1500–1840. He provides an exhaustive survey of the topics and formats that were printed in the period.15 He finds a convergence between particular subjects and the chosen format: religious works such as psalm books, prayer books, catechism and other edifying works belonged to the smaller formats of duodecimo and sextodecimo; octavo was mostly used for vernacular works within history and storytelling; while quarto belonged to printed sermons and state official writings.

A comparison of related subjects in Black Books and printed matter constitutes something of a challenge considering their miscellaneous content. However, medical literature and books treating subjects related to the body would be a reasonable place to start, since the majority of Black Books contain various cures, advice and remedies for treating illnesses. Horstbøll observes that most books in this category were printed in octavo and quarto formats, a fact that proves concurrence and a direct relation between formats in the two book genres. Some manuscripts also present texts which are obviously collected from contemporary or older almanacs, where astrological and astronomical knowledge of celestial bodies and the relationship between planets, stars and the days of the year provided guidance on movements and actions in everyday life. It is the close connection between astrology and medicine that shines through here, as it had a strong influence on theoretical and practical medicine in the early modern period.16 Horstbøll observes how a steady flow of almanacs were offered from the sixteenth century onwards, most often in the smallest formats of duodecimo and sextodecimo.17 Even though Black Books drew on the same subject fields and compiled elements from these books, they did not seek a relation in terms of format. The same can be seen in relation to European grimoires, also mainly printed in the smaller formats.18

The frequency in Black Books of practical recipes connected to the making of colours, ink, wax, metals, lacquer and similar compounds drew on subjects which were regularly offered in art books entitled Kunstbog (Danish), Künstbuchlein (German), Books of Secrets (English) and Secreti (Italian) as previously mentioned. Danish art books printed in the mid-seventeenth century as part of a series entitled Oeconomia Nova appear, for instance, in small octavo formats (17 by 13 centimetres), similar to a large group of books in the corpus.19 Correspondingly, other European art books were printed in octavo or quarto.20 Parallels in format choice are evident both in the related art books and in medical books offered on the book market.

Even though conclusive remarks concerning format choices demand a more systematic investigation into socio-economic and cultural factors, as well as subject compared to format choice, some tendencies can be identified. The Black Book formats communicate on several levels. First, the formats point to an affinity with the stationary, more expensive and learned book genres. Second, the formats potentially signal what type or genre their makers wanted to produce or believed them to be. While the first does not necessarily depend on the other, the format choice would still have a certain effect; linking and accordingly identifying Black Books by format to other learned works would potentially increase their legitimacy.

Literary and aesthetic conventions, as well as historical contingencies such as time, place and purpose, should always be set against individualism, since a manuscript, as John Dagenais points out, ‘is constituted by the individuals who created it’ and, consequently, ‘takes up its physical residence in that same world of variation, imprecision, and error’.21 Personal modesty and decorum could stand against literary conventions and be decisive factors in the choice of formats.22 However, well-established and honoured authors may have chosen large and costly formats for their work, signalling their reputation and position, even though they might appear ‘muted’, as anonymous publications still communicate some modesty. Even though the author’s status and role was far from clarified during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, anonymity could certainly also be instrumental in achieving other things.23

Size informs use, since ‘format shapes the body’s interaction with it’, as Bradin Cormack and Carla Mazzio simply, but elegantly points out.24 It communicates the subject(s) contained in the book and affects the way it is received, read and used. The Black Books under investigation here are largely produced in quarto and octavo formats and thus communicate, by way of literary conventions, an affinity with learned medical works, European ‘how-to books’ or art books and grimoires. While the content of the books was highly practical in form, the formats do not reflect the same strong connection with practical, mobile and easily carried handbooks and thus lead to assumptions about collective or individual actions aimed to direct the reception of the books.

Binding

Unlike the somewhat consistent choice of format, the number of pages in Black Books varies greatly. While the largest book in my corpus consists of 119 described leaves (or 238 pages), the smallest one consists of only five written leaves (or ten pages). Even though some books prove to be incomplete, the corpus generally shows that Black Books were made in a variety of sizes requiring different binding techniques. Close to half of the books display the simplest binding method whereby the folded pages are stitched together with thread (see Table 3.2). In some cases, they are provided with a soft paper cover to protect the pages within or to provide the book with a title page. Such covers were, in all likelihood, applied to a larger number of manuscripts, but many have now deteriorated due to frequent use. Other cases show how several separately bound parts have been joined with additional stitching to make them appear as a single work. This particular binding technique probably served another important function: the chance to add new material to the book over time. As is stressed several times during this study, the production
Table 3.2

Binding

Period

Total

Parchment

Leather

Card-board

Soft cover

Stitched sewing thread

Unknown

1601–1650

1

     

1

1651–1700

0

      

1701–1750

8

 

1

1

 

4

2

1751–1800

32

1

2

2

8

15

4

1801–1850

10

  

1

3

3

3

Total

51

1

3

4

11

22

10

process itself constitutes a significant feature, because judging from different inscriptions and styles of handwriting this process sometimes went on for years, decades and even generations.

As evident from the great variety of sewing thread and stitching marks, these types of binding reflect a domestic manufacturing process and were conducted with whatever tools and techniques were available. The binding signals a production mode where a practical need to bring the material together into one manageable unit was the primary motivation, even though circumstances such as lack of resources certainly could have been decisive factors for not providing the books with more substantial support.

Other books are given a more permanent and solid binding. These binding techniques vary from stiff cardboard paper to leather binding covering the whole exterior of the book. Most of these binding methods were professionally executed, as can partly be observed from Fig. 3.1, even though the cost thereof must have varied substantially. The binding provides the writings with a physical, unifying body. Even though pages might have been left blank for potential later additions, and loose leaves tucked between the pages testify to a dynamic perception of what constituted the work, the physical body of the book—and binding in general—is what makes it a book. But what specifically does the binding communicate?
Fig. 3.1

A collection of Black Book spines, from decorated leather binding, stiff cardboard to soft paper cover. Note that the picture has been manipulated and does not represent the actual measurements of the different books. National Library of Norway, Oslo and Norwegian Folklore Archives, University of Oslo

Let us explore a few cases to answer this question. Two books stand out from the corpus in that they were given a costly and ornamental binding. Both are probably from the mid-eighteenth century and are quite comprehensive compared to the corpus as a whole, with a 108 and 92 pages, respectively, representing the quarto and octavo formats.25 Both books have prepared leather binding wrapped around stiffened covers with relief-embossed spines decorated with framed borders and motifs. On one of the books the borders are ornamented in golden colours, while the other book has been decorated with multiple colouring, most of which has now worn off. While one was given additional relief embossing on the front cover, the other has marbled papers glued to the inner covers of the book, an application common in other manuscripts. While quite simple and modest in their embellishment, compared to bound books elsewhere in Europe, which could be decorated with quite extravagant and excessive ornamentations, the two books are quite typical of the aesthetic ideals and binding techniques found in Norway in the eighteenth century.26 What these professional and costly bindings communicate is a material status and explicit affinity with other literary works, as they show binding techniques that were typical for printed books. Placed on a bookshelf there is nothing to indicate that the books are homemade and handwritten. On the contrary, socially they point to the owner’s economic status and communicate the value they represented to the owner and thus his willingness to invest in improving it. Culturally, they communicate on a literary level that the owner conceived of, or at least wanted to consider, his books as proper literary printed works.

The costly materials applied to the books testify to the value and effort put into supporting and authorising the content. The material features not only help to authorise the book as a literary object; the authorisation also encompasses what is in fact presented: the knowledge within.

Certainly, there are other cases which reveal a similar desire for ‘upgrading’ the books. The Black Book shown in Figs. 3.2 and 3.3 is a case worth mentioning here. The pictures demonstrate that while the actual binding technique applied is one of the simpler types, with thread sewn into the spine to hold the pages together, both covers have been furnished with paper illustrations gathered from another book and glued on as decoration.27 The illustrations chosen to adorn the covers resemble—as can be quite easily imagined—the more elaborate relief embossing found in professional binding. Decorations such as this were certainly applied to enhance the aesthetic value of the book, and it is not difficult to imagine that these covers also serve as attempts, similar to the cases discussed above, to make it look like a proper literary work.
Figs. 3.2 and 3.3

Black Book in octavo from 1843. The above picture shows glued cover decoration on the front page, which was also applied to the back. The ornaments resemble a typical costly leather relief embossing. The below picture shows the title page of the book, where simple sewing holds the leaves of the book together. NFS Svartebok Ål, Hallingdal, Norwegian Folklore Archives, University of Oslo

Writing Styles

The Black Book manuscripts are primarily recognised by the individual hand of the writer. They demonstrate conventionalised handwriting styles connected with different periods in early modern Norway, which were associated with distinctive features and uses. Different levels of literacy shine through some of the texts as testimonies to a period when the ability to write was not a common skill and was often obtained outside educational arenas. Yet, what these manuscripts show is the individual’s desire to write and produce a Black Book text regardless of a lack of proper training or fully developed literacy skills, and this testifies to the importance and value attached to these books.

The Black Books dated to the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries are written in gothic style. Gothic style was imported from Germany and arrived in Denmark-Norway in the late sixteenth century, replacing what is called the ‘older gothic’ with the ‘younger gothic’. Generally, the younger gothic remained the established writing style until the nineteenth century.28 In the same period fraktur became the printed expression of this style. From the sixteenth century onwards the writing style saw several developments and changes. During the first two centuries the writing and printing styles shared certain similarities, and as a transitional form a specific alphabet was developed with decorative free-standing letters in large formats. This style was called official fraktur (kansellifraktur) and was especially designed for headings in manuscript production.29 During the eighteenth century Norwegian writings were dominated by the younger gothic style evident in manuscripts and fraktur in printed works. While the Latin style was occasionally used, especially in international trading and learned treatises, as it was regarded as the proper style for scientific writing, it was not until the beginning of the nineteenth century that its use increased. By 1870 it was on the verge of replacing gothic style completely.30 The hybrid writing style found in the youngest manuscripts testifies to this transition period, where the Latin style and the younger gothic style may appear within the same sentence or word.

While most Black Book manuscripts apply the gothic style in writing, the majority show a consistent use of fraktur in paragraph headings. Three Black Books even appear exclusively in fraktur (see Fig. 3.4).31 The somewhat consistent application of the fraktur style evokes the immediate question of why. As the style generally belonged to the printed medium it seems somewhat out of place in a manuscript context. What were the writer’s reasons for mixing these styles, and what did he want to accomplish by using fraktur?
Fig. 3.4

Black Book in sextodecimo from Ringebu dated to around 1750–1800 and written exclusively in fraktur. The book is also provided with stiff parchment covers. NFS Moltke Moe 106 VIa, Norwegian Folklore Archives, University of Oslo

Even though the gothic and fraktur styles generally belonged to two different communication media in the eighteenth century, the seventeenth century saw several similarities between the styles which might have affected writing styles long after they developed into more ‘cultivated’ and separate forms. Such tendencies are pointed out by Jostein Fet in his regional study of a manuscript culture found on the west coast of Norway, where he detects a certain conservatism in writing styles across social classes.32 Typically writing skills were passed from older to younger writers, in the process transmitting older writing styles to new generations. This form of conservatism could also have explained the use of fraktur in Black Books, if the style in general had been characterised by common features, but this is not the case. As Figs. 3.5 and 3.6 show, the divided use of fraktur in paragraph headings and gothic in body texts is distinct, demonstrating an intentional use of the two separate styles. This characterises the majority of the Black Books in Norway.
Figs. 3.5 and 3.6

The two manuscript pages show two different writing styles. While the oldest book above from around 1650 illustrates a modest attempt at applying official fraktur in the paragraph heading, the second and youngest book below from the second half of the eighteenth century is typical for its combination of fraktur in paragraph headings and gothic in the body text. NB MS 881 and NB MS 8120, National Library of Norway, Oslo

Official fraktur, on the other hand, which was specially designed for headings in manuscripts, may provide an alternative solution to the question. As mentioned, the style was specifically directed towards professional writers who could explore the original forms of the letters and display their skills in elaborate aesthetic drawings.33 Apart from Fig. 3.5, one Black Book in particular illustrates this writing style. It is especially evident on the title page, where the text announces that the book is by Cyprian the world famous practitioner of black arts once again revised and improved by highly learned and art-skilled Doctoribus.34 Judging by Figs. 3.7 and 3.8, the writer is undoubtedly highly skilled at practising this style and uses a series of stylistic and creative devices in the design. Based on the handwriting in the body text, this book is dated to approximately 1750, which is quite a late example of this elaborate form of fraktur. Even though it does not illustrate the general usage of fraktur in the books, it directs attention to the fraktur style and pinpoints its different relations to the corpus.
Fig. 3.7

The title page of Cyprianus in quarto from around 1750 is exceptionally beautiful in its application of different writing styles framed by decorative borders. It partly mimics printed text in appearance and states that the book was printed, which indicates that printed templates are used deliberately to ensure a specific reception of the book. NB MS 4832, National Library of Norway, Oslo

Fig. 3.8

Elaborated ornaments from certain manuscript productions contribute to making Cyprianus a hybrid book and point towards a maker with specialised skills and experience in manuscript productions. No less than seven imaginary creatures are embedded in the first letter ‘C’. NB MS 4832, National Library of Norway, Oslo

While official fraktur did not disappear in the eighteenth century, it was not commonly used. Developed into more neutral and simple forms, it could appear in headings in certain manuscript genres connected with official document production in particular. The simpler form of official fraktur shown in Fig. 3.5 certainly corresponds more to the fraktur used in the corpus, and this may very well have been the style by which the Black Book writers were inspired. Yet the consistent use of fraktur throughout the eighteenth century and at the beginning of the nineteenth century testifies to an inspiration and motivation that can hardly be attributed to official fraktur alone, and it certainly does not explain why three Black Books appear exclusively in fraktur.

Writing a whole manuscript in fraktur certainly was not common practice during this period. Even though there are cases of this style in other types of manuscripts, it is chiefly connected with the writer’s or intended reader’s lack of skill in the gothic style. Judging by the fraktur applied in Black Books, insufficient writing skills is probably not a viable explanation for the written formulas , prayers and recipes which occasionally run quite beautifully through the pages. A more adequate explanation for the use can be found in the printed models owned by the writers. Jostein Fet points out that in the region he studies the number of books among peasants increased radically during 1720–1740, a factor that Fet takes to be an indicator of increased reading skills among peasants.35 That the region serves as an example of—and not an exception to—the rest of Norway, has been confirmed by others.36 Increased exposure to books in which fraktur was by far the most common style may have established distinct ideas as to what style constituted proper literary works and, accordingly, what style to apply in the self-production of literary works.37

Was the use of conventionalised font styles from printed matter a way to create the impression or illusion that the manuscript in question was a ‘literary work’, or was it simply a genuine expression of wanting to relate to the printed literary genre and a specific readership? Taking into account the claims in some of the books that they were ‘printed’ alongside several other manuscripts, and that in attributing authorship they go to great lengths to point to their printed source (see Chap.  4), it testifies to the status enjoyed by printed books among the writers. Relating the Black Books by means of font style and other historical or contemporary conventional connections, the writers not only connect their books to the printing medium, but also intend to draw on the authority they believed occupied this medium. In my opinion, the use of fraktur was not an expression of imitation, but part of an authorisation strategy that was meant to help the books climb the literary ladder.38 From this perspective, the fraktur style in Black Books is not an expression of ‘matter out of place’, as Mary Douglas would have put it, but serves to show how new readers and writers construe new meaning out of the forms and styles they utilise.39

Material Conceptions

The story about the sorcerer in the introduction to this book points in the direction of yet another feature of the materiality of the Black Books that needs addressing. While the manufacturing process described above pinpoints how material qualities and applications enabled the identification, reception and authorisation of the books, the books as objects were tied to specific conceptions, which most certainly affected the contexts in which they appeared. In the story mentioned the withdrawal and separation of the Black Book from the sorcerer is considered necessary for ending the disturbance and discomfort experienced by the people of the village, suggesting that the very physical existence of the book enables the sorcerer’s magical abilities and powers. The same is suggested in the insident where a Black Book was confiscated in Christiania from the imprisoned Swedish female magical practitioner Elen Hansdatter Fremstad from Värmland in 1750. Extracting the book from the female owner was part of a disciplining and improvement process, as the Black Book itself was believed to contribute to her lack of discipline.

Black Books are seldom mentioned in connection with the Norwegian witch hunts.40 The few cases where the books do appear, however, indicate similar conceptions of the books. In 1630 a man called Oluf Nordhus appeared in court for owning a Black Book that he had obtained from a barber surgeon called Baldtzer as payment for food Oluf had given him. Baldtzer had claimed that the book ‘would be good for Oluf to read for his oldest son’s disease’ .41 When the court learned that Oluf could neither read nor write and did not know any letters, they found that Oluf ‘could not have used it [the Black Book] to violate God’s word’.42 Although the records of the final result of the case are inconclusive, it appears as though Oluf was freed of all charges. But why would Oluf keep a book in the first place if he was unable to read it? I believe the answer lies in the fact that being able to read the book was not synonymous with being able to use the book.

The power of the book owner is here conceived as closely tied to the book itself and its presence in proximity to the owner and goes beyond the knowledge it contains or mere reading abilities.43 While the content of the books could certainly be memorised, the Black Book as an object serves as a catalyst for conceptions of the potent power embedded therein. Mere knowledge of the existence of such a book was conceived as inducing and enhancing effects in magical practices performed by Black Book owners, a conception that has been thoroughly documented by Kathleen Stokker when studying the application of Black Books among Norwegian immigrants in the United States in the late nineteenth century.44 As the examples above demonstrate, gaining control over the potential power embedded in the book–owner relationship required breaking the physical bond between object and person.

The downside of benefitting from the power embedded in the book as an object was, however, the reciprocity of power exchange. While the owner, it was believed, gained the power invested in the object, the object would in turn gain control of its owner. Books of magic possessed such double powers. Material proof supporting this notion lies partly in the fact that Norwegian Black Books have occasionally been stored or placed in the most unlikely locations. The oldest Black Book known in Norway, the so-called Vinje book from 1480, was found stuck underneath the wooden floor close to the choir in the Vinje Stave Church. A book from the same area was found in the church tower of Kvitseid Church in the 1830s. Another book from the late eighteenth century was found tucked underneath the turf roof of a farm in Sogndal on the west coast of Norway, while yet another book from the same area dated to 1813 was hidden in the attic of a house.45 What all these records probably testify to is the conception also supported by the legends that getting rid of a Black Book could be a difficult task, since the books themselves did not necessarily agree to be separated from their owners, or destroyed for that matter. As the legends explain, the books could not be burnt or thrown away, as they would always reappear as if nothing had happened. The books are described as objects with a will of their own, and if the owner was not prepared for their power or unable to control it, the books could potentially act on their own.46 That some reciprocity might have been at play here between the actual application of the Black Books and the narrative conceptions surrounding them is highly probable, even though this may not be the only explanation for their somewhat odd locations.

Conceptions expressed in the same narrative universe concerning the transmission of Black Book knowledge represent another feature of this notion. Records describing how Black Books were transmitted from one owner to the next show that several concerns were at stake in this process: whether the new owner was worthy of receiving the book and its knowledge; whether the person was predestined to own and manage such an item; and whether the person was strong enough and able to handle its content and ‘will’. Fostering these notions are foundational conceptions of the books as potent objects which demanded caution, care and wisdom.

Finally, the way Black Books were referred to further underscores conceptions of the books as special objects. In contemporary writings and later recorded legends the books are commonly denoted in the singular as The Black Book (Svarteboken), conceptualising the book which both represents all books and is simultaneously a single object. The singular reference to the Black Book is more than a mere reference to a specific genre and more than fixed notions as to the kind of knowledge held in these types of books. The Black Book is a reference embodying potent power and independent will, demanding that the owners have strength, an equally resilient will and a great portion of wisdom.

Making Books

How do we recognise Black Books as books? As this chapter shows, the answer lies partly in the fact that they meet certain expectations about what constitutes a book, whether the codex or the printed book. They constitute a material object that is defined by its collected unity of leaves filled with writing. Furthermore, they draw on established practices and notions connected with the literary sphere, which serves to relate them to the community of books and to expand our understanding of what a book can be.

Providing Black Books with a characteristic binding material made them signal a visual and physical connection with other literary works. The writing style applied in Black Books further strengthens their relationship with literary works by linking them to a common literary communication mode. Choices of format illuminate the social context of these books, showing how and to what extent they relate to literary conventions and intended use. Furthermore, the reception mode connected with these features contributes to the authorisation of the books. As such, the material features serve at least two functions: they help to identify the works as books; and to secure their response mode within the literary context.

From a certain perspective the manuscripts bend and stretch towards the printed genre by mimicking certain features from printed books. The Black Book makers made use of status markers such as format, binding and writing style, all to support and enhance the content within and enable the authorisation of its knowledge. When the book shown in Fig. 3.7 claims on the title page to have been ‘printed in Stavanger in Norway Anno 1699’, it was most certainly done to enhance this authorisation. Others point to connections with printed books by stating, for example, that the book had been ‘published’ or that it built on other published works. In some respects, the Black Books seem to ‘want’ to be printed books. However, they are not, and even this fact is somehow to their benefit.

There are distinct hybrid qualities to the Black Books if we regard them from the vantage point of mutually exclusive categories of script versus print. As Walter Ong and D. F. McKenzie have aptly concluded, however, all books are in fact hybrids.47 Books seldom ‘behave’ according to the unadulterated categories used to describe and sort them, which in turn (should) effect our interpretation of them. First and foremost the Black Books highlight the interplay of manuscript and print by pushing the relationship between textual categories, form and design and by challenging our conception of what a book is.48

Seeking to understand why the Black Books appear as they do evokes questions of the writers’ motivations for designing the books the way they did. In certain respects, it would be easy to interpret some of the material features as imitations of printed literary works and their application, motivated by strategic calculations or naïve interpretations. Another way of seeing them, however, is to take them at face value as books that contain knowledge conceived as important by the writers. When choosing a mode of presentation for this knowledge the writers applied features from both personal and common repertoires of material and literary tools in order to secure its reception, and this, in sum, makes the Black Books unique expressions of conceptions of what a book was conceived to be. If we could ask Arne Larsen what he bought for ‘3 stÿver’ when he disembarked in Amsterdam, he would most certainly reply ‘a book’. With the premise that he had already made plans for his writings, we could follow up by asking him why he chose to purchase that particular book. Perhaps he would be somewhat confused by the question, uncertain of our intentions or what we really meant. Or maybe his answer would come directly and without hesitation, since his own motivations had always been clear to him: ‘I bought the book because I intend to make one’.

Footnotes

  1. 1.

    ‘Denne bog til hører mig/Skolelærer/Arne Larsen/kiøbt i Amsterdam i/Holland den 15de September/1816 og givet for den/3 Stÿver’, see AAKS, svartebok. For more information on Arne Larsen, see Chap.  2.

  2. 2.

    This is evident from his own comments in the book, and as such the book is one of very few in the corpus to testify to active experimentation.

  3. 3.

    Cf. Bradin Cormack and Carla Mazzio, Book Use, Book Theory: 1500–1700 (University of Chicago: University of Chicago Library, 2005), p. 9. For a general introduction to material applications and writings and their meanings, see Peter Stoicheff, ‘Materials and Meanings’, in The Cambridge Companion to the History of the Book, ed. Leslie Howsam, Cambridge Companions to Literature. The Cambridge Companion to the History of the Book (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015), pp. 73–89.

  4. 4.

    When referring to bibliographical features, I use the most common terms applied within this field. This entails giving simple explanations of material facets of the manuscripts, rather than applying a full-scale bibliographic apparatus which would require specialised knowledge both from a potential reader and from me. Therefore, I have striven to make these descriptions as transparent as possible in my analysis without losing sight of important details.

  5. 5.

    Henrik Horstbøll, Menigmands medie: Det folkelige bogtryk i Danmark 1500–1840: En kulturhistorisk undersøgelse, vol. 19, Danish Humanist Texts and Studies (Copenhagen: Museum Tusculanums Forlag, 1999), pp. 275–76.

  6. 6.

    When examining the books I make no distinction between potentially ready-made and bought books which were later inscribed and books which were manufactured by their owners. Apart from the introductory case, I have found no proof, either in the material or in additional information on the books, of others being purchased.

  7. 7.

    Charlotte Appel, Læsning og bogmarked i 1600-tallets Danmark, vol. 23, Danish Humanist Texts and Studies (Copenhagen: Museum Tusculanums Forlag, 2001).

  8. 8.

    Ibid., pp. 613–35; Cormack and Mazzio , p. 46.

  9. 9.

    Margaret J. M. Ezell , ‘Handwriting and the Book’, in The Cambridge Companion to the History of the Book, ed. Leslie Howsam, Cambridge Companions to Literature. The Cambridge Companion to the History of the Book (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015), pp. 90–106.

  10. 10.

    ‘En/Lieden Haand/Bog/Rigtig Copi/Efter Origialen/befunden og Sammen/skreven paa Pergament/Anno 1516 den/16de September/’, see NB MS 8 640i.

  11. 11.

    ‘En Liden Kunstbog/eller et/Udtog af Selve/Sybrinaus,/ som var skreven af biskop/Johanes Sell til Oxford/udi England’, see Mary S. Rustad, ed., The Black Books of Elverum (Lakeville, MN: Galde Press, 1999).

  12. 12.

    ‘[D]enne lille Bog er mange nyttige/undrætninger j for dem som/forsigtig vil bruge dem baade/til folk of kreatur’, see NFS Moltke Moe 106 VI,d.

  13. 13.

    In an article from 2014 I explore the possible stationary use of the Black Books through a thought experiment in connection with one of the few Black Book collectors in the corpus, see Ane Ohrvik, ‘Et forsøk på portrett av en svarteboksamler i Norsk Folkeminesamling’, in ‘En vild endevending av al virkelighet: Norsk Folkeminnesamling i hundre år, ed. Line Esborg and Dirk Johannsen (Oslo: Novus Forlag, 2014), pp. 207–18.

  14. 14.

    For further details on the motives for these legends, consult Chap.  8.

  15. 15.

    Horstbøll , 1919, pp. 273–354. See also ‘In Octavo: Formater, form og indhold på det populære litterære marked i 1700-tallets Danmark’, in Bokens materialitet, ed. Mats Malm, Barbro Ståhle Sjönell, and Petra Söderlund, Nordisk Nätverk För Editionsfilologer (Stockholm: Svenska Vitterhetssamfundet, 2009), pp. 197–223.

  16. 16.

    See, for example, the study by Morten Fink-Jensen, Fornuften under troens lydighed. Naturfilosofi, medicin og teologi i Danmark 1536–1636 (Copenhagen: Museum Tusculanums Forlag, 2004).

  17. 17.

    The first almanac in Norway was printed in Kristiania (Oslo) in 1644 by the printer Tyge Nielszøn , also in duodecimo, and with Danish almanacs as models. The Danish models are evident from the times of sunrise and sunset in this almanac, which are presented using the horizon of Copenhagen, not Kristiania. This is also the case for the following almanac printed in 1678, see J. Fr. Schroeter, ‘De ældste trykte almanakker og kalendarier i Norge’, in Boken om bøker, ed. Herman Jæger and W. P. Sommerfelt (Oslo: Steenske Forlag, 1926), pp. 93–108.

  18. 18.

    See, for instance, Petit Albert, Le solide tresor des merveilleux secrets de la magie naturelle et cabalistique du petit Albert. Traduit exactement sur l’Original latin qui a pour titre Alberti parvi lucii libellus de mirabilibus naturae arcanis. Enrichi de plusieurs figures mystérieuses pour former des talismans, avec la maniere de les faire. (Bellegarde: [S.n.], 1658); Anon, The Magick of Kirani, King of Persia, and of Harpocration containing the magical and medicinal vertues of stones, herbes, fishes, beasts, and birds : a work much sought for by the learned but seen by few : said to have been in the Vatican-Library in Rome but not to be found there nor in all the famous libraries of the empire / now published and translated into English from a copy found in a private hand. (London: [S.n.], 1685).

  19. 19.

    See, for instance, Caspar Jugel, Oeconomia: Eller nødvendige beretning oc anleding, hvorledis en gandske huußholding paa det nytteligste oc beste (saa fremt Gud allermæctigste giffver sin velsignelse) Kand anstillis, [vol. 1], Oeconomia Nova paa danske: Med andre hosføyede tractater (Copenhagen, 1648); Peter Hake, En liden dog konsterig bog/ om adskillige slags farffve oc bleck, vol. 2, Oeconomia Nova (Copenhagen: Jørgen Holst, 1648); Valentin Boltz von Ruffach, En ny oc konstrig illuminer-bog : Det er, hvorledis konsteligen er at giøre oc berede alleslags farffver, som er meget lystig oc gaffnlig at vide for skriffvere, malere oc andre som elske saadan konst, sampt nogle nye tilsatte konst-stycker som tilforne aldrig ere udgangne paa prent, Oc nu paa danske udsat, oc til trycken forfærdiget., ed., [vol. 3], ibid. (Copenhagen: Peter Hake); Hans Herwigk, En nyttig bog om bjer: Hvorledis mand med dennem skal handle oc omgaaes, af egen forfarenhed oc flittig observation colligeret oc sammenskreffven efter den maneer oc maade som her udi Danmarck nytteligst oc gaffnligst befindis, [vol. 9], ibid. (Copenhagen: Jørgen Holst, 1649).

  20. 20.

    These books were generally printed in octavo formats; see, for example, Anon, Christophe Landré, and Jeremias Martius, Kunstbüch … von mancherley nutzlichen, biszher verborgnen und lustigen Künsten … sampt einem andern Büchlin / vor etlichen Jaren in frantzösischer Sprach, durch Christophorum Landrinum auszgangen, darinn etliche fürtreffliche bewerte Artzneyen … begriffen seind, jetzt aber beyde in Teutsche Sprach verfertiget durch Hieremiam Martium (Augsburg: Manger, Michael, 1597); Pietro Bairo , Secreti medicinali … Ne quali si contengono i rimedii che si possono usar in tutte l’infermità che vengono all’huomo. Cominciando da capelli fino alla pianta de piedi … Et questo libro per l’utilità sua si chiama, Vieni meco. [Pietro Bairo] (Venice: Tebaldini, Nicolo, 1602); Pierre Erresalde, Nouveaux secrets rares et curieux. Donnez charitablement au public par une personne de condition. Contenant divers remèdes eprouvez, utils & profitables pour toutes sortes de maladies. Seconde édition. Augmentée de remèdes très souverains pour se penser de la maladie contagieuse, & se préserver d icelle. Avec divers secrets pour la conservation de la beauté des dames, & une nouvelle manière pour faire toutes sortes de confitures, tant seiches que liquides. [Pierre Erresalde]. (Paris: Loyson, Jean-Baptiste, 1639–1675, 1660).

  21. 21.

    John Dagenais, The Ethics of Reading in Manuscript Culture: Glossing the Libro De Buen Amor (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1994), pp. 16–17. See also Linda Nix, ‘Early Medieval Book Design in England: The Influence of Manuscript Design on the Transmission of Texts’, in A Millennium of the Book: Production, Design & Illustration in Manuscript & Print 900–1900, ed. Robin Myers and Michael Harris (Delaware: Oak Knoll Press, 1994), p. 2.

  22. 22.

    When in 1743, an unknown woman named Hedvig Charlotta Nordenflycht anonymously published a collection of poems, the choice of the small octavo format (17 × 10 cm) in which the book appeared demonstrated humility, Per Ridderstad argues. See Per S. Ridderstad, Textens ansikte i seklernas spegel: Om litterära texter och typografisk form: Anförande vid Svenska Vitterhetssamfundets årsmöte den 27 Maj 1998 (Stockholm: Svenska vitterhetssamfundet, 1999), p. 11.

  23. 23.

    One of them being the possibility to publish critical political ideas. During the short period of freedom of the press in Denmark-Norway from 1770 to 1773, numerous political works were published anonymously. See Henrik Horstbøll, ‘Anonymiteten, trykkefriheden og forfatterrollens forandring i 1700-tallets Danmark’, Lychnos: Årsbok för idé- och lärdomshistoria 2010 (2010).

  24. 24.

    Cormack and Mazzio , p. 8.

  25. 25.

    See NB MS 4 832 and NB MS 8 641.

  26. 26.

    Astrid Bugge, Bokbind og bokbindere i Norge inntil 1850 (Oslo: Aschehoug, 1927), pp. 87–98. For an overview of binding techniques and the binding trade in Europe before 1800, see Julia Miller, Books Will Speak Plain: A Handbook for Identifying and Describing Historical Bindings (Ann Arbor, MI: Legacy Press, 2010); Nicholas Pickwoad, ‘Onward and Downward: How Binders Coped with the Printing Press before 1800’, in A Millennium of the Book: Production, Design & Illustration in Manuscript & Print 900–1900, ed. Robin Myers and Michael Harris (Delaware: Oak Knoll Press, 1994), pp. 61–106.

  27. 27.

    See NFS Svartebok fra Ål i Hallingdal.

  28. 28.

    From around 1500 to around 1850 Danish was the only written language in Norway. The Norwegian written language had developed from Old Norse in the early centuries of the Middle Ages to Old Norwegian in the period c. 700-c.1350 and then to Middle Norwegian in the period c. 1350-c. 1525. When Norway came under Danish rule in 1536, Danish became the official written language and eventually suppressed Norwegian. An independent Norwegian written language was not developed until the second half of the nineteenth century. For a general introduction to the history of the Norwegian language, see Arne Torp and Lars S. Vikør, Hovuddrag i norsk språkhistorie, 3rd ed. (Oslo: Gyldendal Akademisk, 2003). When referring to ‘Norwegian writings’ in the early modern period I mean the writings produced by Norwegians.

  29. 29.

    Knut Johannessen, Den glemte skriften: Gotisk håndskrift i Norge, Riksantikvaren Skriftserie 28 ([Oslo]: Riksarkivet, 2007), p. 18.

  30. 30.

    Ibid., p. 27.

  31. 31.

    These are NFS Moltke Moe 106 VIa, NFS Moltke Moe 106 VIb and Svartebok fra Kvam (in private ownership).

  32. 32.

    Jostein Fet, Skrivande bønder: Skriftkultur på Nord-Vestlandet 1600–1850 (Oslo: Samlaget, 2003), p. 362.

  33. 33.

    Johannessen, p. 124.

  34. 34.

    ‘Cyprianus:/ den over ald Verden viit berømte/ Sorte-Konster./ paa nye igjennemseet of forbedret/ af Høylærde og Konstererfarne/ Doctoribus/ Trykt udi Stavanger i Norge Anno 1699’, see NB MS 4832.

  35. 35.

    Fet , p. 364.

  36. 36.

    Lis Byberg, ‘På sporet av 1700-tallets lesere’, in Bokhistorie, ed. Tore Rem (Oslo: Gyldendal, 2003), pp. 82–101; Gina Dahl, Books in Early Modern Norway, vol. 17, Library of the Written Word (Leiden: Brill, 2011), pp. 161–83. As is pointed out in a European context, not only did the general level of reading skills improve, but new modes of reading were also introduced, see Reinhard Wittman, ‘Was There a Reading Revolution at the End of the Eighteenth Century?’, in A History of Reading in the West, ed. Guglielmo Cavallo and Roger Chartier, Histoire De La Lecture Dans Le Monde Occidental (Oxford: Polity, 1999), pp. 284–312.

  37. 37.

    Similar perspectives on the values ascribed to different writing styles can be detected in the discussions of the switch from fraktur to roman letters, which engaged authors and publishers in Norway during the nineteenth century. See Tore Rem, ‘Materielle variasjoner: Overgangen fra fraktur til antikva i Norge’, in Bokens materialitet: Bokhistoria och bibliografi: Bidrag till en konferens anordnad av Nordisk Nätverk För Editionsfilologer 14-16 september 2007, ed. Mats Malm, Barbro Ståhle Sjönell and Petra Söderlund, Nordisk Nätverk För Editionsfilologer, Skrifter 8 (Stockholm: Svenska Vitterhetssamfundet, 2009), pp. 151-73.

  38. 38.

    For a discussion of the use of the concept of ‘imitation’ in printed and handwritten texts, see Margaret M. Smith, ‘The Design Relationship between the Manuscript and the Incunable’, in A Millennium of the Book. Production, Design & Illustration in Manuscript & Print 900–1900, ed. Robin Myers and Michael Harris (Delaware: Oak Knoll Press, 1994), pp. 24–25.

  39. 39.

    Cf. D. F. McKenzie , Bibliography and the Sociology of Texts (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999), p. 19; Roger Chartier, ‘Reading Matter and “Popular” Reading: From the Renaissance to the Seventeenth Century’, in A History of Reading in the West, ed. Guglielmo Cavallo and Roger Chartier, Histoire De La Lecture Dans Le Monde Occidental (Oxford: Polity, 1999), p. 278.

  40. 40.

    For statistics concerning the Norwegian witch trials, see, for instance, Hans Eyvind Næss, Med bål og brann: Trolldomsprosessene i Norge (Stavanger: Universitetsforlaget, 1984). Næss provides several tables throughout his study, and while they have been revised upwards since he first published his study, they still give a good picture of the Norwegian context; Gunnar W. Knutsen, Trolldomsprosessene på østlandet: En kulturhistorisk undersøkelse, vol. 17, Publikasjoner fra Tingbokprosjektet (Oslo: Tingbokprosjektet, 1998), pp. 27–30, 32–33, 35. Knutsen discusses the witch trials in the eastern part of Norway. For the witch trials in northern Norway and in connection with the Sami peoples, see Liv Helene Willumsen, Witches of the North: Scotland and Finnmark, vol. 170, Studies in Medieval and Reformation Traditions (Leiden: Brill, 2013); Rune Blix Hagen, “Witchcraft and Ethnicity: A Critical Perspective on Sami Shamanism in Seventeenth-Century Northern Norway,” Writing witch-hunt histories, ed. Marko Nenonen and Raisa Maria Toivo (2014). A comprehensive source book with transcripts of the witch trials in northern Norway is also available in English; see Liv Helene Willumsen and Katjana L. Edwardsen, The Witchcraft Trials in Finnmark, Northern Norway (Vadsø: Varanger Museum Skald, 2010).

  41. 41.

    ‘Mester Baldtzer fich hannom Bogen, och sagde at den schulde werre goed for hans Eldste søns Siugdom, og leste den for hannom’, see NFS Process no. 259 Ryfylke tingbok A 13, 1630–1631, fol. 18b–19a.

  42. 42.

    ‘[D]erforre ey At haffue brugt den til nogen Guds naffns Misbrugh’, see ibid. In another case, the book is the centre of attention and the reason for a huge quarrel between several involved; see NFS Process no. 38 Aurskog, Akershus, Oslo lagdømme tingbok 5, 1611.

  43. 43.

    Cf. Roger Chartier and Lydia G. Cochrane, The Author’s Hand and the Printer’s Mind (Cambridge: Polity, 2014), p. 67.

  44. 44.

    Kathleen Stokker, Remedies and Rituals: Folk Medicine in Norway and the New Land (Saint Paul, MN: Minnesota Historical Society Press, 2007).

  45. 45.

    See NFS Vinjeboken, DHS-k87o7/4924 Ølheimboken, NB MS 8 640k, Black Book from Bergen (B3) respectively. The information regarding how they were discovered in these locations are in the provenance records of these Black Books.

  46. 46.

    These legends come from around 300 narratives recorded from the mid-nineteenth century to the first half of the twentieth century and are available from the Norwegian Folklore Archives.

  47. 47.

    See Walter J. Ong , Orality and Literacy: The Technologizing of the Word, New Accents (London: Routledge, 2002); D. F. McKenzie , ‘Speech—Manuscript—Print’, in New Directions in Textual Studies, ed. Robin Bradford and Dave Oliphant (Austin, TX: Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center, University of Texas at Austin, 1990).

  48. 48.

    Cf. Margaret J. M. Ezell , ‘Invisible Books’, in Producing the Eighteenth-Century Book: Writers and Publishers in England, 1650–1800, ed. Laura L. Runge and Pat Rogers (Newark, DL: University of Delaware Press, 2009), pp. 457–85; William Sherman and Heather Wolfe, ‘The Department of Hybrid Books: Thomas Milles between Manuscript and Print’, Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies 45, no. 3 (2015); Zeynep Tenger and Paul Trolander, ‘From Print Versus Manuscript to Sociable Authorship and Mixed Media: A Review of Trends in the Scholarship of Early Modern Publication’, Literature Compass 7, no. 11 (2010).

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ane Ohrvik
    • 1
  1. 1.University of OsloOsloNorway

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